The eyes are a very important sensory organ. Without vision, life can be really difficult. Knowing how to provide first aid for eye injuries can help prevent possible visual impairment.
Since the eye is a very delicate and exposed organ, it is important to be always on the lookout to prevent blinding eye injuries. Eye injury ranks second in the most common causes of loss of vision, following glaucoma. Trauma from blunt objects accounts for 37 percent of eye injuries, and around 55 percent of eye injury victims are young people (under 25 years).
All eye injuries are potentially serious thus require prompt and appropriate first aid. Even the most simple abrasions can cause scarring or infection of the eye, which can lead to impairment of vision. Administering first aid for eye injuries can greatly improve the outcome of the victim. The initial steps you take are essential in ensuring optimum eye health.
Usually, eye injuries result in obvious signs and symptoms that include:
- Visible wound or cut
- Bloodshot eye appearance, even if there is no visible wound
- Change or loss in vision
- Bleeding from the eye or leakage of clear fluid
- Pain in the affected eye
Even if you do not know first aid for eye injuries, there are things you can do to prevent further eye damage:
- Avoid touching the eye.
- Do not allow the victim to rub the eye.
- Do not attempt to remove foreign object in the eye.
- Do not apply pressure to the eye.
- If it will take several minutes for medical assistance to arrive, tape a paper cup over the affected eye or gently bandage the eye with an eye shield.
- If a chemical enters the eye, flush it immediately under running water. Do not put anything in the injured eye. If possible, note the chemical or bring the container of the chemical to the emergency department for identification.
First aid for eye injuries include:
- Place the victim on his back. Have his head rest on your knees and keep
it as still as possible.
- Tape the injured eye with a paper cup. Cover the uninjured eye with a clean cloth and ask him to keep it closed.
- Bring the victim to the nearest hospital or call for an ambulance service.
Preventing eye injuries is still the best option. It is important to wear protective eyewear especially if your job involves using power tools or if you are engaged in active sports. Taking basic first aid course can equip you with the skills needed to respond in blinding eye injuries.